Children In North Texas Affected By Rare Polio-Like Illness

Kristin Weisell
October 10, 2018 - 12:17 pm
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DALLAS (1080 KRLD) - As kids across the country are suffering from the rare illness similar to polio, it turns out several cases have found their way to North Texas. 

Cook Children's Medical Center in Fort Worth says they've recently treated three children suffering from acute flaccide myelitis, or "AFM". A fourth child suspected of having the illness is being tested by the CDC. 

"The enterovirus D-68 has been implicated often in this condition," says Dr Fernando Acosta, a neurologist at Cook Children's. "There are sometimes other viruses, and sometimes there's no virus, so the medical community is kind of baffled as to the exact underlying cause."

AFM is similar to polio, with weakness in limbs a frequent symptom. Children affected by the virus have complained of one arm or leg being weaker than the other.

Facial drooping is another common symptom.

There are no known cures or preventative measures for AFM.

Parents and children are encouraged to keep with with general wellness, such as always washing hands and staying current on vaccinations.